On the 12th of April 2021, AuDA the Australian regulatory body for the .au domain space is scheduled to make changes to their policy, and this is outlined in the following article: AuDA Domain Name Changes.

This latest blog focuses on one specific change that has the potential to impact organisations with a “parent and subsidiary” commercial agreement.  This includes companies such as car dealerships, real estate networks, or franchises. 

Under the new announced changes, domain name holders can no longer lease or sub-lease domain names or sub-domains to third parties unless that entity is a “related body corporate” with an Australian presence. 

AuDA states that “By selling, renting or subleasing sub-domains, a user is effectively operating a private registry”. AuDA suggests “these leasing agreements effectively present a risk to the third party (using or renting a subdomain) as they are at the mercy of the registrant of the parent domain and are afforded no protections under previous AuDA rules. 

The risk to Australian business relates to the critical clause, “related body corporate”.  In the new licensing rules, companies can now apply for and hold .au domain name licenses on behalf of another company in their corporate group (a ‘related body corporate’), as long as that related company meets the Australian presence requirement.

The question posed to Auda, by brandsec, is whether a franchise or dealership model would be exempt from this new rule under the related body clause. We are yet to hear back and will update affected clients once confirmed.

About brandsec

Brandsec is a corporate domain name management and brand protection company that look after many of Australia, New Zealand and Asia’s top publicly listed brands.  We provide monitoring and enforcement services, DNS, SSL Management, domain name brokerage and dispute management and brand security consultation services.

Contact us today for a free consultation.




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